Horses

Amanda Michelle (Hertig) Cullinan

June 21, 1978 ~ May 10, 2022 (age 43)

Obituary Image

Obituary

On May 10, 2022, Amanda (Hertig) Cullinan, loving wife and mother of three, passed away at age 43, after a four-year battle with breast cancer.

Amanda was born in Keokuk, Iowa on June 21, 1978, to Gillian (Marshall) Martin and Mitchell Hertig. She spent her early years in Hamilton, Illinois, where she became a devout St. Louis Cardinals fan (until her husband Justin converted her to the Red Sox)—this, coupled with a Midwest accent, made her extra cool when she moved to Long Island in 1st grade. Amanda lived in Huntington, New York for the remainder of her childhood and graduated from Huntington High School in 1996 as president of the senior class. She attended Brown University (class of 2000), where she studied biology and played lacrosse.

On June 29, 2001, Amanda married Justin Cullinan. The two lived in Washington State (where Amanda could be seen corralling Justin and his Ranger Buddies) and in Marshfield, Massachusetts, and finally settled in Summerfield, North Carolina, a place Amanda said felt most like home (perhaps something to do with not catching any heat for her love of country music). This is also where she raised their three beautiful children, Chase, Brody and Bryna, who were the light of Amanda’s life. She was an incredible mom, always present, always patient, always there to listen and was the rock of their family.  She was very involved in coaching her kids and countless others. She took her knowledge of lacrosse and was named Coach of the Year as the head women’s lacrosse coach at Northern Guilford High School.

Over the last several years the family spent a lot of time at their beach house in Ocean Isle, North Carolina, where Amanda taught her kids to surf, how to fish and how to enjoy life. 

Amanda had a Doctor Doolittle-level of love for all animals, but a particular soft spot for horses and dogs and they loved her right back. The farm was a respite for Amanda and her horse Modelo was a great source of comfort; in fact, Amanda’s friends “snuck” him (and her chocolate lab Fenway*) into her hospice center, a first for the facility. A few rules were broken that day but everyone was happy, especially Amanda. (*there were also fainting goats because why not?!)

Amanda could make friends anywhere—and she did. She was never in a clique because she was friends with everyone. No matter where she was, Amanda had an open-door policy and a crowded table. She was laid back and chill but somehow also no nonsense—definitely not interested in drama (but would totally listen to yours) with a serious head on her shoulders. She was often the mother hen of the group, but never judged and was always up for a good time (and an inappropriate joke) right up until the end.

She was equally comfortable rocking a cheetah bathrobe and slippers as she was in a dress and heels (OK, that’s a lie, she definitely preferred loungewear but man could she pull off either look). Bottom line: she was truly comfortable in her own skin, effortlessly cool and beautiful, radiating warmth and positivity with an infectious smile. She was open and kind and caring and low-key funny as hell, with a slight raunchiness to her humor. She loved a good “that’s what she said” drop in and continued to use the phrase long after everyone else had stopped.

So many people say, “Amanda was the best person I ever met” and they’re not lying. She is leaving a huge hole in too many hearts to count and will be missed every single day. 

To sum up Amanda’s zest for life, while in hospice care she and her family went on vacation to Turks and Caicos. On day five, she said, “I’m leaving it all on the field” and went down a waterslide.  She never missed an opportunity to show her kids how life should be lived. 

Amanda was preceded in death by her beloved mother Gillian. She is survived by her loving husband, Justin, and their three beautiful children: Chase (17), Brody (15) and Bryna (12), her father Mike Martin, her brothers Joe, Mitchell and James and sister Traci, many brothers and sisters in law and dozens of nieces and nephews she adored.

A celebration of life will be held on June 11th from 3-5 p.m. at Summerfield Farms in Summerfield, North Carolina.

In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting donations to The Amanda Cullinan Foundation, a nonprofit 501(3)(c) that will fund an annual scholarship award for two college-bound student athletes—one from Huntington High School in Huntington, New York, where she was a star student-athlete, and one from Northern Guilford High School in Summerfield, North Carolina, where Amanda coached lacrosse for several years and where her three children currently attend. The Foundation will also support research for triple-negative metastatic breast cancer.

Donations can be made two ways: 

·      by check (payable to The Amanda Cullinan Foundation, Inc). Send to The Amanda Cullinan Foundation, 6 Grace Court Greenlawn, NY 11740

·      through Zelle from any online banking site (reference The Amanda Cullinan Foundation/ 917-951-5885)

Wright Funerals-Cremations, High Point is in charge of arrangements.

 

 

 

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